PBS animated a 1996 Johnny Cash interview where he spoke candidly about rock musicians, God, drugs, dressing in black and Elvis Presley. It’s part of their Blank on Blank series.
When talking about his addiction to painkillers, Cash said: “It’s like an alcoholic. He can’t drink, and I can’t take painkillers. I’m not very brave. For five years I didn’t try to take them. I fought it. I have a total of 34 surgical procedures on my left jaw. Every doctor I’ve been to knows what to do next and to relieve me of pain. I don’t believe any of them. I’m handling it. It’s my pain. I’m not being brave either. I’m not brave at all. After what I’ve been through, I just know how to handle it.”